Posts Tagged ‘Tiger Woods’

Ryder Cup “Raingate?”

“Watergate” or “raingate,” whatever you want to call it, it seems impossible that the US Team is inadequately prepared for the elements.  Here we are, Friday, the first day of the Ryder Cup in Wales and are we surprised it’s raining?  I am sitting here watching the rain delay discussions and surprised in the discovery that the US Team’s rain gear is substandard and the golf bags they are using are leaking water.  You have to be kidding me!  I heard a comment by Paul Azinger, “form over function.”  Corey – what were you thinking?  In this day and age with the technologies out there for breathing, waterproof rain gear – we can’t do better than that? 

The commentators mentioned a suggestion I believe was attributed to Tiger Woods about the equipment.  Each player uses equipment by manufacturers who sponsor them.  Of course, when playing in the Ryder Cup, they don’t wear the labels and endorsement patches, they wear the colors of the United States.  They also wear clothes, shoes, and use bags, jackets, and rain gear selected for the event.  That said, could it be arranged that they use their own equipment (rain gear, bags, shirts, shoes, etc…) that is blanked of labels, but follow a prescribed design and color scheme?  The suggestion’s merit rests in the fact that the players are used to the equipment and the concept would eliminate some variability and unknowns.

Is this much ado about whining?  I don’t think so.  These guys aren’t getting paid to do this (but, sure, admittedly they benefit from the prestige it represents).  This is, in effect, an “Olympics-like” event for most of the best golfers in the world and they do actually feel pride in representing their side.  Why introduce unknowns?

OK, so the matches began again and not much discussion about the equipment.  It’s Wales, I think it will rain again and we’ll hear more.

Tiger’s Return

Is there anyone out there who really thought that Tiger would not play in this year’s Masters? Tiger’s stated overarching goal is to beat Jack Nicklaus’ 18 majors total. He currently has 14 and absent physical disability would never jeopardize any opportunity to add to that total. He’s won the tournament 4 times and has been in the top ten 6 times. He is actually favored to win this time. He was always going to play in it.
The real questions were if and when he would play competitively prior to the Masters. Now we know that he will not. He is preparing for his re-entry into the competitive world privately. But, even we weekend golfers know that golf is a game played mostly between the ears. How do you prepare for that most important element without competition? Playing at Augusta lends itself to his return – the control the Masters tournament provides and the limits on the media. Perhaps he will also seek the support of his renewed commitment to Buddhism to maintain a centering not only off the course, but on as well. Certainly, we know now that he had some distractions over these past few years and he seemed to be able to overcome those demons as they likely played on his conscience unbeknownst to the rest of us. Perhaps his ‘outing’ has, in some ways, released a burden. My guess is that all of these elements are at play and, in the end, Tiger is still Tiger. On the course in this Masters we will see a humbled man, but also a man using his incredible talent for focus under pressure to ultimately humble the rest of the field.